500 Tasmanian businesses, including construction companies can expect an ATO visit in March

500 Tasmanian businesses, including construction companies can expect an ATO visit in March
500 Tasmanian businesses, including construction companies can expect an ATO visit in March

According to the ATO up to 500 Tasmanian small businesses can be expecting a knock on the door from the ATO in March.

ATO Assistant Commissioner Peter Holt said businesses that advertise as 'cash only' and businesses that are operating outside will be especially targeted for a visit from the ATO.

“Businesses that pay cash in hand, or fail to lodge income tax or business activity statements get an unfair advantage and make it harder for other businesses who are doing the right thing. By detecting and addressing this behaviour, we’re helping ensure a level playing field for honest small businesses.”

Tasmanian businesses in the following industries are most likely to get a visit from the ATO in March:

  • Restaurants and cafes
  • Vehicle repairers
  • Personal care businesses including hairdressers and nail salons
  • Pharmacies
  • Construction businesses
  • Clothing stores
  • Grocery stores / small supermarkets
  • Butchers

“In the 2019-20 financial year, we’ll be visiting a further 10,000 small businesses across the country, including in Tasmania”, Mr Holt said.

Tasmanian businesses who are not declaring income or underpaying workers are contributing to the black economy.

“The black economy is estimated to be costing the community as much as $50 billion, which is approximately three percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). This is money that the community is missing out on for vital public services, like schools, roads, healthcare, and infrastructure”, Mr Holt said.

Whilst on the road in Tasmania, ATO officers will also be available to help those businesses that are trying to do the right thing.

“We obviously want businesses to succeed, so we put a lot of effort in to support, education, and assistance services. We offer seminars, videos, a dedicated small business newsroom, an after-hour call back service, even an app that businesses can use to check the performance of their business on the go”. Mr Holt said.

“We understand that people are busy and most businesses are trying to meet their obligations – but there is a difference between needing help, making mistakes and deliberate cover-ups.”

Mr Holt said the ATO will not hesitate to take strong enforcement action against those deliberately avoiding their tax and super obligations and the visits may uncover this deliberate non-compliance.

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Tasmania Ato

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